Improving Your Brand Essence In Sales

Branding is a key component in determining your success in sales and marketing. You may not think that, as a salesperson, your input to how your brand is perceived or recognised should be a priority; isn’t the experience the customer has with your product and service more important than the reputation of the brand?

Well, in a way, yes, but when you consider what the brand says about your product and service, whether the client continues to purchase from you could be manifestly affected by the way the brand essence is depicted.

So, what is brand essence? It’s the feeling clients and prospects have when they have any contact with your name. In a sense, essence overpowers everything else a prospect may have about you. Your products may be the right things for your customer. But if the brand essence stinks, they won’t touch you with a bargepole.

BrandStoke’s ‘8 criteria for brand essence’ has some interesting ideas to contemplate when considering the message you wish to portray. Here are some examples:

  • Focus: This is what you want the customer to focus on when they think of you. What do you want to be known for? How do you want people to think when they hear your name?
  • Feeling: What components of your brand do you want to evoke the true feeling within the mind of the consumer? How do you want the emotional connection to be built?
  • Individuality: What do you want the message to be to each person who you wish to be connected to your brand? What personality do you wish to be associated with?
  • Consistency: Dependability is a brand attribute, so what would you like to be connected to in the customer’s mind? Delivery of the brand message is highlighted every time there is a contact point, so make sure the consistency is tangible.
  • Credibility: Every experience the customer has with your brand identifies what you stand for. Engagement and credibility go together, so be aware of what the key messages are that you are trying to convey.
  • Longevity: Is the essence of your brand designed to last or is it seen as a temporary, fashionable name? Longevity builds trust, which must be a key component in driving the name forward.
  • Personal: There needs to be a personal connection that each consumer or user can have with the brand. Although brand essence is built up over time by others’ experiences, the way individuals feel will be echoed through social media and affect everyone else.
  • Portable: Emotion is transferred across social media, so be aware of what is being highlighted by how transferable the image of the brand is. Your profile can and will be affected across variables like social media as well as other forms of brand transference

Everything you do will have an impact on the way the brand essence is built in people’s minds. Driving customer engagement through effective branding can have a profound effect on the way you as a salesperson of your products will be viewed.

Happy Selling!

Sean McPheat

Managing Director

MTD Sales Training

www.mtdsalestraining.com

(Image by Naypong at FreeDigitalPhotos.net)

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How To Build Your Personal Brand As A Salesperson

Branding, the process of creating an emotional connection to a company or product, has been the subject of many studies and much research. Most of that research has revolved around the companies who have a high or low reputation and what to do to enhance the brand.

Here, we discuss the qualities you need to build you own brand, the skills that can make a real difference in how you are perceived by prospects and clients alike.

* Be Up-To-Date

What you display every day will tell your market how they will benefit from you and your products and services. You need to keep your knowledge and ideas of the competition, the market and the products that serve your customers up-to-date. Nothing affects your branding more than having an outdated, outmoded knowledge of what you stand for. Strong brand are always improving. You should be no different.

* Know What Your Competition Is Doing

You need to always be on top of who else your target market is looking at, and what new services and products they offer. Remember to watch their online offerings, keep up to date with what special offers they have in their armoury. Sett up RSS Feeds from your competitors, search them out on Google Alerts and follow their companies on LinkedIn.

* Crank Up The Value You Offer

Prospects today know what you and your competitors offer as much as, if not more than, you do. Therefore, the value you offer to the market has to been seen to be value-able to them now and for their future. You improve your personal brand exponentially as your value improves.

* Spend Time Revising, Refining & Re-Evaluating Your Brand

Your activities and your presence in the market place gives a clear message about you. Whether you’re looking to expand your career, expand your sales or create job opportunities, you need to identify what you can do to build your reputation. So think about how you can revise what you do daily, refining the qualities you show at every touch point.

* Keep Updating Your Relationships

There are many things you can do to keep your network updated. Using media like LinkedIn can build those close networking skills.

  • Connect your contacts by sharing your connections with other people.
  • Ask how you can help or be of service to your network contact.
  • Let your network know about valuable resources you have to offer
  • Invite people in your network to attend events with you.
  • Build your network by attending social events.
  • Update your social media sites by staying current with posts on LinkedIn, Facebook, or Twitter.
  • Send an online newsletter.

Having a strong personal brand will create more chances for sales than you can imagine. People will look to you for your expertise, your experience and the confidence you build. Your personal brand will speak volumes about you, so make sure you keep the momentum going.

Happy Selling!

Sean McPheat

Managing Director

MTD Sales Training

www.mtdsalestraining.com

(Image by KROMKRATHOG at FreeDigitalPhotos.net)

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Make An Impression To Improve Your Sales

I was in London the other day visiting a client, near Tottenham Court Road. Now, I arrived a little early, so took a slow wander up Oxford Street. Even if you haven’t been to London, you will have heard that Oxford Street is the shopping street that never sleeps!

Well, it was as busy as usual. However, I noticed one man standing with a billboard on, advertising a shop in a nearby street. The advert was for a menswear shop. But what I really noticed was the state of the person wearing the billboard.

He was dirty, unshaven, smoking, greasy and half-asleep. Not a good advert for the shop he was advertising, I thought.

And then I thought about us as salespeople and the image we portray when we are selling ourselves and our company. What you show is your billboard to the world. It includes things like:

  • Your attitude
  • Your appearance
  • Your ability to communicate
  • Your self-confidence
  • Your experience
  • Your ability to solve problems
  • Your responsiveness
  • Your ability to focus on solutions
  • Your dedication to your customers
  • Your work ethic
  • Your product/service knowledge

This is your personal brand. This is what you want to be known for. What do you want your billboard to say about you to prospects and customers? It’s your choice.

As the saying goes, “What you do speaks so loud, I can’t hear what you’re saying”.

I don’t know whether the man wearing the billboard was successful in attracting customers to the shop or not. What I do know is that the impression he made on me meant that shop would not be getting my custom! The brand shouts loud, my friends. Make sure you keep control of what it says about you. When it’s chosen by you and is accurate and positive, that can only be good for business!

Happy Selling!

Sean

Sean McPheat
The UK’s #1 Authority On Modern Day Selling
MTD Sales Training

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Taking Care Of Your Personal Brand

Like it or not, the product and services your company sells have a brand image.

Everything the company does contributes or detracts from that image. High-octane brands, like Coca Cola, Microsoft and Mercedes, have built their reputations over years.

But what about you?

Are you aware of what image you are putting across? This is commonly known as your own personal brand.

Remember, a brand is people’s expectation of their interaction based on perceptions of past dealings or word of mouth. So, a strong and valuable personal brand can be established by focusing more on solving others problems and less on promoting yourself.

If prospects searched your name and company online, what would they find?

Try it now.

What comes up? Are you number one when people search your name? You can achieve higher status in the search engines by carrying some specific and targeted activities. Your LinkedIn, Facebook and personal blog profiles are important to create awareness.

And there are other things you can do to enhance your personal brand. Some examples are:

Create a marketing plan for yourself annually, and review it quarterly. Include specific goals, strategies, action steps, and a timetable.

Become an expert source in your field. Write a specific article, design a white paper on your industry and become an expert source for reporters. Make sure you have a current photo, biography and resume for people to check on.

Design your ‘elevator speech’. Within the time that it takes an elevator to travel upwards, be able to deliver a precise description of what you do, how you do it differently, and the benefit it provides.

Network creatively. Make new contacts and remember to stay in contact with them. Powerful personal brands have powerful friends.

Be aware of your personal appearance. Balance your individual style with clothing that will appeal to those you are trying to impress. Your brand image will shout louder than any words you say.

Every contact you have with a client creates ‘touchpoints’. Ensure each one is remembered and stands out for the right reasons.

Remember, your personal brand is one of your greatest business assets. Your brand will speak for you anyway, because it’s the emotional connection you make with all you meet. Make sure yours is one that is memorable.

Happy selling!

Sean

Sean McPheat
The UK’s #1 Authority On Modern Day Selling
MTD Sales Training

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